September 28, 2022

Language movement in Jhenaidah
The way it started

Asif Kajal
Language month is going on now. The language we speak is also established with blood. Sacrifice for language is a rare occurrence in the world. There is a proud chapter in the language movement of Jhenaidah. Ed Amir Hossain Malita, a living language soldier, has become indebted to the new generation by highlighting the history of language movement in Jhenaidah among thousands of distorted history and rumor based information. The Bangla language movement was a cultural and political movement that took place in the then East Bengal (present day Bangladesh) from 1947 to 1956. Through this movement for the protection of fundamental rights, the people’s demand for the establishment of the state of Pakistan as one of the state languages ​​was manifested. The movement reached its climax on February 21, 1952. Many people including Salam, Barkat, Rafiq and Jabbar gave their lives for the language. Although not completely, some history is being distorted with the language movement in Jhenaidah. And the reason for this distortion is the death of most of the language soldiers who took part in the language movement. Many of the present new generation do not know the history of Jhenaidah language movement well. Officials and politicians in the administration are also promoting a fragmented part of the language movement in Jhenaidah. Many of those who took part in the language war are still alive. But due to old age, they are not able to remember properly. Two years ago, the Jhenaidah district administration made posters in honor of the six surviving language soldiers. There is a picture of them. But the names of several people at the forefront were dropped for political reasons. One of the surviving soldiers who spoke about the language movement in Jhenaidah is Amir Hossain Malita, a prominent lawyer, politician and film director. On February 21, 1999, he published a book entitled “Jhenaidah in the Language Movement”. By inserting a lot of important information in the book, he has presented the evidence of unknown documents about the then politicians of Jhenaidah, their leadership, razakars and liberation war. No one dares to distort or deny this history written by him. Because he has directly mentioned in his book the exact history of the language movement in Jhenaidah as a living soldier of the language movement. Amir Hossain Malitha mentions in his book that there was a doctor in Jhenaidah who was a supporter of the radical Muslim League. Everyone knew him as ‘Hooghly Doctor’. From his mouth at the end of January 1952, the students of that time could learn about the language movement by sitting or standing at the Qazi Hotel in Jhenaidah. Because then no newspaper would come to Jhenaidah. News of the language movement was not published in any newspaper. A newspaper would come from India, but again after 2/3 days. No radio station in Rawalpindi, Lahore or Pakistan broadcast news of the language movement. However, news of the language movement was occasionally broadcast on the airwaves of India. At that time, the young student leaders used to listen to the radio at the homes of Awami Muslim League leaders Sirajul Islam Pocha Mia and Dr K Ahmed. The pro-Pakistan Hooghly doctor once said in a story, “The movement will take the country to the abyss because the Muslim students in Dhaka want Bangla as the state language instead of Urdu.” Golzar Hossain, an English teacher at Wazir Ali High School, and Anwar Zahid alias Tipu Hooghly, a former minister, later heard the young student leader standing there. But they had no knowledge of the language movement. They are both just high school students. On 2/3 of February 1952, Enamul Haque Cotton, cousin of the late Jahar Ali Miah of Narikelbaria village in Sadar Upazila, a student of Dhaka College at that time, came to his house. Basically, the news of the language movement spread from him. Cotton Mia brought handbills, posters, pamphlets and some forms for mass signing from Dhaka at that time. They were received by Anwar Zahid Tipu (former Information Minister) of Narikelbaria village, Golzar Hossain of Bhutiargati village, Sabdar Hossain Sabu of Darigobindpur village and Habibur Rahman of Khajura village. Cotton Mia handed over the leaflets to the young student leaders of Jhenaidah and left with mass signatures and suggestions for the language movement. Cotton Mia is the nephew of Zahid Hossain Musa Mia, a pioneer of the language movement in Jhenaidah. He also made arrangements to inform his uncle Zahid Hossain Musa Mia in Jessore. Zahid Hossain Musa Mia was then the publicity secretary and college student of Jessore district branch of East Pakistan Muslim Chhatra League. Meanwhile, the pro-movement students were waiting for the arrival of Zahid Hossain Musa Mia in Jhenaidah. Since Musa Mia did not come, no work was going well. No procession, no meeting, no signing and no posting. After the arrival of Musa Mia in Jhenaidah, a committee was formed under his leadership. The heat of the language movement is felt in Jhenaidah. At that time, Murari Mohan Ghoshal, the headmaster of Jhenaidah High English School, and Golam Mostafa, the senior assistant teacher, secretly informed the local student leaders that a strike had been called across the country on February 21 to demand Bengali language. Movement-oriented students keep counting day by day with infinite courage. College student Musa Mia had earlier formed a committee called All-Party Student Struggle Council. Golzar Hossain became the chairman of the committee and Anwar Zahid, a 10th class student and later a former minister, became the general secretary. Dr. Abdul Latif and Amir Hossain Malita were also on the committee. Malita was made publicity editor. Jhenaidah was up in arms ahead of the formation of the committee and the strike on 21 February. The head of Jhenaidah High English School, Shi, expressed his solidarity with the movement Kshak Murari Mohan Ghoshal, Assistant Golam Mostafa, Shri Pannagbhushan Majumder, Maqbool Hossain Debendranath Pandit, Apolitical person Alauddin alias Ala Mia, Naeem Uddin Ahmed, Kabiraj Nripendra Nath Sen, Dwarak Nath Pandit, Babu Debengu and many others. Although all the students of Jhenaidah got the news of the hartal on 21st February, they never saw how the hartal was held or how the hartal was to be observed. In this way a suffocating situation was created. After the school tiffin in view of the strike on February 21, a secret meeting was called with the students of class V to X in the mango orchard of Kanchilal in Jhenaidah town. The meeting was chaired by Golzar Hossain Mia and chaired by Anwar Zahid Tipu. In the absence of student leader Enamul Haque Kotan, a 21-member committee was formed with him as president and Anwar Zahid Tipu as general secretary. Moinuddin of Kanshi village, Sabdar Hossain of Darigobindpur, Golzar Hossain, Habibur Rahman, Mustafizur Rahman, Zahidul Islam Bulu, Anwarul Qadir Laddu of Shikarpur, Abdul Latif, Anwarul Islam Batul, Ali Hossain Malbet, Basbed of the language movement. Sardar, holy ally of Arappur, Nurul Islam Khan Haider, Shafiuddin of Baragram, Purnendu Roy Chowdhury Khokon were elected as leaders. However, Mizanur Rahman Mizu and his brother Shahidur Rahman, Kazi Akhtarul Islam Madhu, Abdur Rauf, Jalal Uddin Ahmed of Arappur, Syed Ali, Rabiul Islam Rabi, Nirmal Kundu, Abdur Razzak, Abul Hossain of Surat, Asadur Rahman Moti of Shikarpur were present at the meeting. Shahadat Hossain of the village, Jhantu, Dabir Uddin Ahmed of Bhagwannagar, Kunti Joardar, Khalilur Rahman, Abdur Razzak, Asadur Rahman alias Ali of Putia village and his classmates Kali, Emdadul Haque Kunti, Nanda Dulal Saha, Gorapad Saha, Maqbul Hossain, Paresh Chad. , Amjad Hossain of Tetulbaria, Chunnu, Chhota Jhantu of Samashpur village, Sukhdev Biswas, Dilip Kumar, Abani and Kesht, two sons of Murari Mohan Ghoshal, Abu Bakar of Udaipur village, Amalendu Sarkar, Nitai Pad Swarnakar, Thandu son of Ahazar Biswas of Ar-Yadanga village, Sushil alias Jharo, Dulal, Abdul Wadud Mia, Ashafat Joardar of Shikarpur, Ahsan Ullah of Putia village, Ajay Das of Satbaria village, Abbas Uddin (r) of Byapipara and his brother Abdus Sattar, Gurupad Biswas of Dakatia village, Chaklapara today Jizur Rahman, Ayub Hossain of Bejimara village, Amjad Hossain of Dogachir, Abdul Quddus Madhu of the same village, Ishahak Ali of Barakamarkundu village, Subodh Mitra of Jhenaidah town, Rabiul Islam Dulal of Narikel Baria village, Akhtaruzzaman of Barakamarkundu village, Chemo, Hasia Khatun, Ayesha Khatun, Mosiuzzaman Mosi, son of a police officer, Aminul Islam, Kalinj Das, Gias Uddin of Barada village of Shailkupar, Sirajul Islam of Bhagwannagar, daughter of a veterinarian, Abul Hossain and Abdur Razzak of Surat village, , Nasir Uddin alias Mohi, Abdus Shukur, Rezaul Karim Benu Doctor, Abdur Rashid of Kalyanpur village, Abdul Matleb, Latafat Hossain of Kastsagra village, Dr. Shahadat Hossain of Chhotkamarkundu village, Akbar Ali of Istegapur, Abed Ali and Kudragra of Aryanarayanpur village. The meeting decided to close shops, roads, markets and vehicles. Students share responsibilities among themselves. That juncture comes. Strict strike was observed in Jhenaidah on 21st February. Firoz Sai, the artist of this popular song “Ek Minute Nai Varsa Sang Chahe Rang Tamasha” was a second class student at that time. His father Dr. Abdul Waheed was a physician in Jhenaidah subdivision. He also went to the procession inspired by his father. Besides, Dr. K Ahmed’s infant son Manzur Ahmed and Latafat Miah’s infant son Shahidul Alam Bachchu also joined the procession of language movement with the adults. Shri Dhirendra Nath Sarkar, the youngest teacher of the then Kanchannagar Primary, joined the procession with the youngest students of the school. Monwara Khatun, wife of Dr. K. Ahmed and former headmaster of a girls’ school, played a major role in the language movement. He was able to bring the daughter of the then Deputy Magistrate in the procession on 21st February. On the night of 19 February, posters in support of the strike were put up in Jhenaidah. Who or what picks up the next morning. On the 20th, Abdul Latif, Golzar Hossain and Nurul Islam Khan Haider insisted and sent Batul, Amir Hossain Malita and Pabitra Mitra to post again. Shivapada bairagi made glue by mixing wheat flour with mulberry. Sabdar Hossain Sabu and former Information Minister Anwar Zahid Tipu took care of these. In that day people were inspired in this way in language movement. After the strike, Awami Muslim League leader Nazmul Haque closed the cinema hall on February 21 and gave Anwar Zahid a speech. On that day, Anwar Zahid Tipu spoke for 19/20 minutes with a tin can. The audience who came to see the movie listened to Anwar Zahid’s speech that day with fascination. News of the brutal shooting death in Dhaka during the strike on February 21 did not reach Jhenaidah on the 22nd. After the evening news of the murder spread in Jhenaidah on the news of Akashbani Kolkata. They start to gather. Students create barricades in the streets with bamboo. Although there was a police patrol, they did not stop. The people of the city took part in the program irrespective of their party affiliation. Seeing the barricade, the then Deputy Magistrate Abdul Mannan stood up and called the students and said, “I will go to the khas room and write it down. No one has come to the court.” Leaders of Awami Muslim League used to monitor this movement of students all the time. In this way the history of the language movement in Jhenaidah is written, said language soldier Ed Amir Hossain Malita in his book. (Author: Senior Media Worker in Jhenaidah)

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